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Old 08-28-2015, 10:50 AM   #1
Rilas
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INT : Black Interior Coupe Swap Door Panels

As some of you may know, I have a 1993 Honda Accord SE Coupe. While I love the fact that it came with leather from the factory I'm not overly pleased with the fact that it is tan. A few weeks ago while roaming the junkyard I found a 1991 Honda Accord Phoenix Red DX Coupe. I took all of the lower interior trim out of it, for the ever elusive black trim for our cars sedan or coupe. After installing all the rest of the interior trim, I only had the door panels left. I did not look at them closely until after fully disassembling both door panels. Then realized that this wasn't going to be a simple undertaking. So this lead to the birth of this DIY.

**Note the way I have done this will only work if you have the leather inserts from an SE coupe. The black door panels are going to get hacked up, as you will see below.

Tools needed:

Pen
Dremel
-Multipurpose Rotozip bit
-Large and small sanding drum with extra sanding rolls
-Flexible extension (Not a must but very helpful.)
Phillips Screw Driver #2
Flat Head Screw Driver Small
Drill
3/8" Drill Bit
Tape Measure

1. Fully disassemble both door panels, you will end up with the 5 pictures below

Door Pockets


Door Handles


Black Door Panel


Tan Door Panel


Tan Leather Insert


If you pay close attention between the 2 door panels you will notice how different they are.

2. Once the door panels are disassembled I start working on removing the cloth insert from the black door panel. These are glued on and somewhat of a bitch to remove. I tried a few methods, what worked best for me was to just spray the entire insert down in Simple Green. Get it fairly wet to the touch, but not so much that it is running out of the cloth all over. We can continue on with some of the other steps before this is fully removed. I let it sit out overnight, sprayed it again before I went to work. Then after work I sprayed it down one more time. While wet I just started lifting the cloth at the corner, and slowly peeled it all back. This took about 5 minutes after the Simple Green had some time to break down the glue a little. (Note I continued to work on the other steps after the first application. But this does need to be finished before step 8.)

3. Create a pattern off the tan door panel for the door pocket.


4. Trace pattern onto black door panel.


5. Cut black door panel with multipurpose rotozip bit. Clean up edges with sanding drums. Drill holes with 3/8" drill bit.


6. Using the door pocket figure out where to drill, and cut your hole for the courtesy light. Clean up the cut using the sanding drums.

Marked and ready to cut and drill.


Cut and drilled.


7. Install door pocket. Using the speaker cover mark the hole to be drilled for it, and drill out the rivet that holds the old speaker cover mounting tab. Install speaker cover.


8. **The cloth insert must be removed by this point.** Cut out the raised area of the door panel along the armrest and forward.


9. Cut along the back of the door handle to create a space for the leather insert to rest in.


10. Measure and mark out where all the tabs are on the leather insert, then cut the slits.


11. Set the leather insert into the door panel. Trace around the back lower corner of the insert, onto the door panel. I used a standard pen, as the ink will wash off and doesn't rub off as easily as pencil graphite.


12. Now the time consuming part. Lift the vinyl and its backing from the door panel. I did this using the small flat black screw driver. Lift it only to your traced line or just past it. Now while holding up the lifted vinyl use the dremel with a sanding drum to sand the door panel. Sand it down until it matches up with your traced line on the front. You will have to pause often and wrap the vinyl around to see how you are progressing. Sorry I should have taken a few more pictures to try and explain better. Once finished do the same for the front. Just don't mark the front until the rear is done. The leather insert will seat much nicer, making it easier to trace the line.

Door Panel Rear Cut Finished


Door Panel Front Cut Finished


13. Set the leather insert into the door. It should fit well now, even though it doesn't want to sit in on it's own yet. Pushing the leather insert as much as possible fit the door handle to the door panel and mark where the tabs are and the holes. Using just the leather insert trace the pattern of where the front of the door handle sits, and it's hole there as well.

Door Panel Marked for Rear Section of Door Handle


Door Panel Marked for Front Section of Door Handle


14. Cut out the area marked for the tabs and the front of the door handle, once cut sand to clean up. Drill out the marked holes with a 3/8" drill bit. I forgot to take a picture of this specifically. You can see what was done in the next picture.

15. Measure and mark out the new door handle, using the tan door panel for measurements. I didn't take a picture of the marking, but here it is after being cut.


16. Door panel ready for reassembly. Looks rough but I promise it will turn out good.


17. Reassemble door panel. I added washers to some of the screws to help hold them down in areas that were cut away.


18. Fix any broken off tabs that hold the door on. I carefully pried these out of my tan door panels. Then grind the teeth most of the way down, you want to leave some just to add surface area for the epoxy to grab onto. After grinding down the teeth a bit, I used a Dremel with a 1/2" sanding drum and cleaned off all the old glue and the coating on the metal. Do this on all surfaces that contact the door panel and the top of the clip. Rough up the door panel where the clip rests with the sanding drum. Apply epoxy to the door panel in the roughed up areas. Set in the door clip and apply more epoxy over the entire top surface. You want a nice even coating all the way across the top of the clip. We really want this sucker stuck to the door panel. I used this. 3300 PSI bond strength. I hope it can hold up. I did not install the plastic clips yet as I want the epoxy to fully setup before having to be pulled on.

Door Clip 1


Door Clip 2


19. Door panel ready for installation.


20. Enjoy the fruits of your labor!


Hope some of you might find this useful!

Last edited by Rilas; 08-29-2015 at 03:20 PM.
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Old 08-28-2015, 11:43 AM   #2
Flip-Eye
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That is quite an undertaking.

I've got a 93 SE Coupe with tan interior and don't mind the look. It's the current condition of the seats that bothers me.

Good DIY
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Old 08-28-2015, 12:49 PM   #3
Rilas
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It is quite the undertaking. And as bad as this panel looks, the passenger one is so much worse. It was my learning experience though. Also I figured if I screw them up I wasn't any worse off than before I started. I could always just reassemble the tan door panels and put them back on.

I don't mind the look of the tan so much but I always wanted the black interior. So I made it happen. These days trying to find good condition seats can be a royal pain. I'm surprised honestly that the CL seats I found weren't already gone. Some minor ripping on the drivers seat, and some stiff leather in the passenger seat.
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Old 08-28-2015, 01:01 PM   #4
Theos92VR4
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Why not just spray your tan door panels with SEM color coat landau black interior paint? With proper prepwork it will last as long as you have the car, and looks oem
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Old 08-28-2015, 01:24 PM   #5
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I thought the same thing, too. I've done the prep work and I still have a couple areas that have issues, and the parts haven't even been installed yet!

I should have used a Rotozip tool to cut my panels for the inserts. I used a knife and a Dremel with some semblance of accuracy, but it took forever with constant checking and remarking.
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Old 08-28-2015, 01:25 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Theos92VR4 View Post
Why not just spray your tan door panels with SEM color coat landau black interior paint? With proper prepwork it will last as long as you have the car, and looks oem
I knew it was an option and much easier. But I didn't want painted panels, I know it can last as long when done right. But knowing my luck something would happen and I'd be painting them again. I figured I would try this, and if it fails I would just paint them. But this way I have OEM black coupe door panels.
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Old 08-28-2015, 07:56 PM   #7
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I cry. such a rare interior.
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Old 08-29-2015, 03:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baracuda View Post
I cry. such a rare interior.
Yes but the end result looks much better than the beginnings and middle of the project I had first posted.
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Old 08-29-2015, 03:25 PM   #9
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props, dude. looks like its working out fine!!
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- 1993 Accord LX - White sedan (sold)
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Old 09-01-2015, 10:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rilas View Post
Yes but the end result looks much better than the beginnings and middle of the project I had first posted.
Deff a clean install and looks, props for the hardwork.
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Old 09-01-2015, 06:59 PM   #11
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Looks alright. It's a shame you had to hack a DX door card, being they are stupid "rarish".
I found a DX at my local junkyard and was in awe when I seen complete interior panels untampered with, though it does suck they have manual windows. The rear plastics and door sills are really what you need, and I would've just sourced gray door panels and paint them with that SEM paint.
But I read you dont like the painted look.
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Old 09-01-2015, 09:11 PM   #12
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I don't see what everyone is so upset about. These panels are in cars that are in a junkyard that are likely going to be destroyed. What are the chances that the next person that finds these things is a DX coupe-owning enthusiast who is interested in fully converting their interior over to black? Look at the entire community of '90-'93 Accord owners in the US. There might be two people who own DX coupes that have the money to buy every single panel, cover, floormat, trim piece and so on from the junkyard and swap it into their car and would be willing to do it. People who own these cars are into roof racks, XXR wheels and HIDs.

Once the proper cuts are made on these panels, they're effectively LX panels. Cut a little further for the speaker chambers and they're EX/SE panels. What's wrong with using these as a base?
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Old 09-01-2015, 09:28 PM   #13
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yeah, if he didnt get them and put them to this very creative use, in another week or two they would have been crushed and gone anyway. I consider it more that he was lucky to have the opportunity to save and actually use what was already pre-destined as trash. I always wished I could use them in my own car, never in a million years thought of converting them. And it actually worked, and looks good! Nicely done
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Old 09-01-2015, 09:59 PM   #14
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Me too! I always thought, "Well, that would be a silly place to put a tweeter, and there's nothing else I can feasibly cover that crank hole with, so I guess I can't use the panel!" I have OEM SE coupe inserts, too. I just never considere them being a fuller height to reach down and cover that hole.
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Old 09-02-2015, 12:55 AM   #15
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There is nothing wrong at all, but I don't know. I would be bothered by the simple fact that the bottom edge doesn't have a groove for the leather insert, and that there would be a hole exposed in the door pocket.
But hey, if it pulls the look off.... more power.
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Old 09-02-2015, 08:52 AM   #16
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Well I didn't think I would raise this much angst, by "hacking" up the DX door panels. They were destined to be destroyed, and I doubt another CB7 coupe loving enthusiast would have taken them. Thinking the same thing as Jarrett, "There is nothing I can really do to make use of those." Well I come from a family that has done DIY for years, we've built most of our own buildings and homes. So I was determined to at least try this. Worst case scenario I totally screw them up and throw them away, a waste of $20. I've wasted a lot more money on a lot worse ideas.

I didn't get 3 pieces of the plastic and the double seatbelt locks for the rear seat. As someone had already taken those and the speakers in the car. So there were no rear speaker covers (Not a big deal as I have 2 sets of SE black 6x9 speaker covers.) In doing so they broke the door panels around the speakers. (They were no longer stiff but flexible and useless as a framework.) This is most of what I cut out, so all I had left is a rigid door panel.

For reference here is what it looks like front to back. Makes it look a bit better than just the front doors.

2 Tone 1


2 Tone 2 (Ignore the tan rear seat bottom, in search of a charcoal gray CL seat bottom.)


Also I've been looking for a grey coupe interior for about a year and a half. I still haven't found one yet. I ran across this black DX coupe first. Being what I truely wanted, I was willing to attempt this.

Also thank you guys for the compliments!

@Jarrett
@cp[mike]
@barracuda
@Flip-Eye
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Old 09-02-2015, 10:50 AM   #17
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I gotta admit tho, seeing the other photo of the other completed door pane makes the interior a little bit like it's supposed to have came out the factory with a tan/black two-tone. Keep collecting this parts.
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Old 09-02-2015, 11:49 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by ShiroiKinCB View Post
I gotta admit tho, seeing the other photo of the other completed door pane makes the interior a little bit like it's supposed to have came out the factory with a tan/black two-tone. Keep collecting this parts.
Thanks ShiroiKinCB, I was a little skeptical at first myself. When I only had one of the back sections done. Now that all of the door panels and all trim has been converted over, I really am pleased with it.
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